Betfred’s director in favour of mandatory levy on profits

The managing director of Betfred is in favour of a tax to be applied across the gambling industry in the UK.

UK.- Mark Stebbings, managing director of Betfred, said that he supports a mandatory levy on his company’s profits. He wants a tax to be applied to all betting firms, including operators of the National Lottery, as part of a new measure to fight gambling addiction.

Stebbings supports the move despite the fact that a big number of Betfred’s outlets could close due to the increase in the maximum stake on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs). The £2 maximum stake was introduced earlier this year and it has already proven to be devastating for some companies.

In a letter to Scottish MP Ronnie Cowan, Stebbings said: “We were present at the Gambling Commission’s launch of their three-year strategy and we support the two strategic priority areas of Prevention and Education, and Treatment and Support.

“Although our company has gone through a seismic change with the reduction of the maximum stake on FOBTs to £2, and as I write this I’m not sure how many of our 1618 shops we will be operating in 12 months’ time, we have always supported the introduction of a mandatory levy which would include a donation of 0.1% of gross gambling yield (GGY).”

The managing director of Betfred also revealed that it has made it very clear to the government that it would back a levy on profits during a 2018 consultation. He insisted that it should be applied to all sectors of the gambling industry.

“Our position then was that a mandatory levy should include all gambling industry operators, including the National Lottery. So to summarise, Betfred supports the introduction of a mandatory levy to fund education, research, treatment and support, relating to harm caused by gambling.”

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